Who Are We?
The Alokli community is a diverse collection of slightly offbeat people who happen to love African music & dance (and with a few exceptions, Thai cuisine). Here's a peek at our secret identities.
Dan Gorlin is founder and Director of Alokli West African Dance. He is a Master Drummer in the tradition of the Anlo-Ewes of West Africa. A veteran performer and educator, Dan has worked in Los Angeles, San Francisco, and now Philadelphia for over 25 years and has directed Alokli since 1985. His unique and effective style of teaching has introduced thousands of children and adults to African music and culture.
Dan has taught African dance-drumming at California Institute of the Arts (summer youth programs), UCLA extension classes, and at countless Bay Area schools and recreation centers. He has directed or participated in hundreds of African music performances on stages including the Marin Civic Auditorium, Alice Arts Center (Oakland), Fillmore West (San Francisco), Zellerbach Auditorium (Berkeley), and Wilshire Ebel Theater (Los Angeles).
In Philadelphia Dan continues to teach and perform African music & culture. Community classes are ongoing at Temple University and recent local clients include Swarthmore College, Painted Bride Art Center, Percussive Arts Society &The Philadelphia School.
Dan is the author of Alokli's Songs
of West Africa songbook. His day job usually has something to do with computers, but he's trying to quit. He is the author
of several award-winning computer games published through Broderbund Software,
including the international mega-hit "Choplifter".
Peace Elewonu is an internationally renowned dancer, choreographer and teacher. She has toured with the National Dance Company of Ghana for 15 years as a senior performer and artist. Peace received the "Best Traditional Dancer in Ghana " Award in 1994. She has worked with international contemporary dance choreographers, such as Germaine Acogny from Senegal, Bud Blumenthal, Ann Marie Ronald, Lawrence Lavasser and Bernard Monte.
Peace is a graduate of Jant-Bi Ecole de Sable, a contemporary dance institute in Senegal, and has collaborated with many choreographers in France, Belgium, Madagascar and Burkina Faso . Her recent choreography, Vividzeme (darkness) was performed as a solo piece at the Momplieye international dance festival in France. Other dance choreographies include the duet "African Woman in Baobab" which had received standing ovation at concerts in France, Nigeria and Ghana .
Peace currently teaches traditional Dance and Songs of Ghana in workshops throughout the United States and also performs her own original contemporary African dance choreography.
C.K. Ladzekpo is Director of the African Music & Dance Ensemble in Berkeley, California, and a professor at University of California, Berkeley since 1974. He is a Master Anlo-Ewe Drummer and Dancer and a scholar of sub-saharan African music.
C.K. is not technically affiliated with Alokli, but we list him to acknowledge
the incredible support and guidance he has given us over the years. Most Alokli
ensemble members have studied and/or performed with C.K. at some point in their
lives, and if they haven't we nag them until they do. C.K. currently teaches
classes at U.C. Berkeley and at the East
Bay Center for the Performing Arts, among others. His classes and performances
are highly recommended if you live in the San Francisco Bay Area.
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